Caribou’s Dance Mix Of Mongrel Music
- By Miriam Elder
- Jun. 17 2010 00:00
Caribou’s latest album launches with a track called “Odessa,” an eerie electro-pop anthem that appears to have little to do with the Ukrainian seaside resort that gives the song its title. Dark and driven by Caribou’s trademark layered synth with loops of seemingly random sounds, it’s the musician’s most danceable song yet — and reason enough to go see his show at Ikra on Saturday night.
Caribou is Daniel Snaith, a London-based Canadian musician who draws on his love of math and technology to create some of the most innovative but accessible music around today, along the lines of Hot Chip, Junior Boys and Four Tet.
His albums have gotten more danceable with time, something said to only contribute to the quality of his shows, which he plays with several band members on stage. This tour has gotten great reviews, aided by a psychedelic (don’t let that word turn you off) light show.
In a way, it’s dance music for those who don’t like dance music in its most popular sense — overwhelmed as the genre is by ear-splitting house.
“Some of the tracks definitely make people dance, some of them would definitely not make people dance,” Snaith told Pitchfork, a leading indie music site, in April. “A lot of the time, the music I love the most is some weird mongrel that doesn’t end up in one category or another — it’s somewhere in between.”
No mention of Caribou would be complete without noting that Snaith holds a Ph.D. in advanced mathematics from Imperial College London. (If you want to speak to him after the show, I suggest Googling his thesis, “Overconvergent Siegel Modular Symbols,” and having a read so you have something to talk about.)
Don’t worry, it’s not all serious. Hopefully, Caribou will indulge the audience with older tracks, many of which have a distinct ’60s pop influence. He’s got nearly a dozen albums to choose from, so it shouldn’t be too hard.